CHAPTER TWENTY: "POKER FACE"

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CHAPTER TWENTY: “POKER FACE”




“Hey you”

“Hey you” came the reply on the other side.

“What are you up to?”

“Nothing much. The truth is, I am actually very bored.”

“I thought you might be and that is why I wanted to invite you to dinner.”

“Dinner? Aren’t you supposed to be on bedrest?”

“My bed needs the break, plus I could use the company.”

“Your parents are there to keep you company.”

“No they left this morning.”

“I see. So where do I meet you?”

“At my house, I want to cook for you.”

“Do you think that that’s a good idea?”

“Come on, I am not about to go For Colored Girls on you. You are in safe hands.”

“I was not even thinking about that but now that you mention it…”

He laughed. “My bad but ever since Tyler Perry released that movie, women in general have become skeptical whenever a man invites them over to their place. There are still good men around you know.”

“Well I have not seen any in a minute.”

“Are you trying to hurt my feelings?”

“I am just saying” she replied.

“Ok allow me to change your mind then…friend” he said putting the emphasis on friend.

“When you’re well, I will consider it but I don’t want you to slave away in front of the stove when you just got out of the hospital.”

“That was over a week ago and I am doing much better, if I was not do you think my mom would have left my side?”

“I don’t know…”

“Come on…pretty please?” he did the voice thing that she loved so much.

“Ok, ok.” She was weak. “But I don’t want an elaborate meal, just something simple and I will bring dessert.”

“I thought that you were the dessert” he said with a laugh.

“What?!” she exclaimed.

“I said ‘oh girl my feet hurt.”

“You ain’t slick DeAndre.”

“I will text you the address Azania. Looking forward to having you here. Bye”

“Bye” she said and hanged up.

She has been having a lazy morning and not having anything to do was getting to her. She tried to go back to work but her business partner banned her from setting her foot in the office. Her projects were handled by her more than capable staff, they emailed her the final pictures and so far they have been doing a good job without her. She appreciated that they at least tried to include her.

The scars on her face had not faded completely and that is why she had not been to her parents as yet. She often spoke to them and promised to visit them as soon as she could. She had every intention to do that as soon as her scars had healed and then she would give them the mild version of what happened. Right now they were under the impression that she was swamped with work.

Her phone vibrated next to her. She had a text.

DeAndre: The address is 5403 Collette Drive. Is 3p.m too early for you?


3p.m was good for her. It’s not like that she had anything else to do.

Azania: See you at 3p.m.

She glanced at the clock on her wall. She had around three hours to get ready and find Collette Drive. She had no idea where it was but luckily she had GPS and it would be no problem.

At 14h55 she pulled up in front of 5403 Collette Drive. She was stunned. DeAndre had a huge beautiful house surrounded by over an acre of land and it was in an affluent neighborhood. She would have never guessed that such a place existed in the city. Absolutely beautiful.

‘Who exactly was DeAndre Morgan’ she couldn’t help but wonder. When she got out of the car, he met her in the drive way.

“Welcome to my humble abode” he said with a huge smile plastered on his face. “I hope you didn’t have any trouble finding the place.”

“I had no trouble at all, I used GPS to get here.”

“I thought that you would not come” he said as they walked to the door.

“Come on, I am a woman of my word” she replied. “You have a beautiful home.”

Her eyes tried to take everything in at once.

“Thank you. Would you like the grand tour?”

“Sure” she said.

They started up stairs and then came down stairs, he showed her every corner of the house. It had a nice homey feel to it. Eventually they ended up in his gourmet kitchen.

“Can I offer you anything to drink?” he asked

“I’ll have whatever you are having” she said and made herself comfortable in a chair at the island.

“Red wine it is” he said taking out some glasses and pouring in the wine he got from the wine cooler.

“Thank you” she replied and took a sip.

“You’re welcome” he replied with a smile.

“Once again, your home is beautiful” she said glancing around in the kitchen once again. Silver appliances and mahogany colored cabinetry with marble countertops that complimented both colors beautifully, was the color scheme of the kitchen.

“I will make sure to pass on your compliments to my interior designer, who is also my mom.”

“She did an amazing job.”

“Yes she did” he said sitting down next to her. “And I am grateful”

“So tell me why a single man like you needs such a big house?” she asked turning in her chair to face him.

“Who said that I was single” he asked with a raised brow.

“Good question…” She assumed he was single. He was single a few months ago but that does not mean he was single now.

“No I am single” he said and took a sip of his wine. “I bought this house because it was a good buy.”

“But still, I would be too afraid to live here by myself.”

“I am a big boy, I don’t scare easily.”

“But still, you need to get a roommate or something.”

“Are you offering?” he asked with a wink.

“No but I am sure you will have no problem finding a woman willing and able to share this space with you.”

“Yes but they are not who I want” he got up from the chair and opened the fridge. What would you like to eat?”

“Anything with meat and veggies, I am not fussy.”

“Yes mam” he said before taking out the ingredients for dinner.

She took the time to once again appreciate just how good looking DeAndre was. He easily moved around the kitchen. ‘Whoever gets this man one day is one lucky heifer’ she thought bitterly and took one big gulp of wine.



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He did not think that she would agree to have dinner with him. But she did and he was happy. He got up and straightened the house. There was not a lot to do because he kept his place clean. A cleaning service came one a week to do major cleaning and he just had to make sure he kept it clean until they came again. That was not a problem because he was a neat person and there was a dishwasher. He was raised how to be a responsible man. He cooked, cleaned and did his laundry.

He took a shower and made sure he smelled good and looked presentable. While relaxing on the sofa and watching Fox News, he heard a car pulling up in his driveway. It could only be one person. He got up and walked outside.

He swallowed the lump in his throat. This might be harder than he thought he thought as his eyes landed on her. Why did he always feel some type of way when it came to her? He didn’t want to analyze his feelings any further and so he walked down the stairs to welcome her.

“Welcome to my humble abode” he said with a huge smile plastered on his face. He was happy to see her. “I hope you didn’t have any trouble finding the place.”

“I had no trouble at all, I used GPS to get here.”

“I thought that you would not come” he said as they walked to the door.

“Come on, I am a woman of my word” she replied. “You have a beautiful home.”

“Thank you. Would you like the grand tour?” he could see her admiring his home.

“Sure” she said.

They started up stairs and then came down stairs, he showed her every corner of the house. They finally ended the grand tour in the kitchen.

He couldn’t help but sneak peeks at her every now and then. Some of the bruises were still evident on her face and he balled up his fists. He could still not get over what happened to her. He had nightmares sometimes. But he could not tell her that.

He decided to keep the meal simple. He grilled some steaks with mushroom sauce and roasted vegetables.   He wanted to enjoy her company more than he wanted to show off his culinary skills.

He took out some plates to set the dining room table.

“Let me do that” she said and took the plates and cutlery out of his hands. “Do you mind if we set up here?” she asked pointing to the island.

“Sure” he replied with a smile. Throughout the cooking process, she had been very helpful and he liked that. He also like that she was so comfortable around him because it made him feel comfortable around her.

“Some more wine?” he asked as they retired to the den after their early dinner.

“Just a little, I still have to drive home.”

He poured some wine in her glass and he sat down on the sofa .She sat next to him but kept her distance.

He reached for the media pad next to him and switched on the sound system. “What do you feel like listening to?”

“As long as it’s nothing that has to do with booty shaking and twerking, I am good.”

He chuckled. “Ok I got you.”

I am ready for love
Why are you hiding from me?
I’d quickly give my freedom
To be held in your captivity

“Oh gosh” Azania groaned.

“What?”

“Please not this song!”

“Isn’t this like the single woman’s anthem or something?” he laughed. “Lately I’ve been thinking maybe you not ready for me…” he sang.

“Please stop!” she begged.

DeAndre continued his singing “Maybe you think I need to learn maturity!”

Azania grabbed the pillow and hit him in his face. He didn’t expect that. He grabbed a pillow and threw it at her. She ducked and ran to the other sofa to get more pillows to throw at him. He ducked and continued to bellow out the lyrics of India Arie’s Ready for Love. She eventually ran out of pillows and her hair had come loose from the bun she had. He threw all the pillows back at her. She fell on the sofa laughing.

“You are such a jerk” she chuckled.

“Never” he said as they picked up the pillows and returned them to their respective places “I just wanted to listen to Miss India Arie.”

He sat down next to her again and handed her the media pad. “Here, you choose what we should listen to.”

She got a huge grin on her face. “Thank you she said.”

He showed her how to operate it and she finally picked a song. The sounds of TLC came through the speakers.

A scrub is a guy who thinks he’s fine
He’s also known as a buster
Always thinking about what he wants
And just sits on his-

“Are you trying to tell me something Azania? Because you and me both know that I ain’t no scrub.”

“I don’t know nothing! You look like you could be a scrub.”

“Girl don’t make me go Chris Brown on you! These Girls ain’t Loyal. You just look ratchet.”

“Ratchet?” she gasped. “Are you calling me ratchet?!”

“You are the one that called me a scrub.”

“But you’re a cute scrub.”


He leaned his head against the sofa railing and stared at her. “You crazy, you know that right?”

She also leaned her head against the sofa railing and stared at him as well. “My daddy always said that I was special.”

Her hair had come lose during their scuffle but it seemed that she did not notice. He brushed it behind her ear and let his thumb trace across the fading scars. He dropped his hand in his lap. He wanted to kiss every one of those bruises until they completely faded away but he made a promise. He promised that he would not touch or kiss her ever again. He intended to keep that promise.

He turned away from her to break the spell that she had cast over him and picked up the forgotten media pad. “Being special is not always a good thing” he said with a smirk.

He selected one of his playlists that consisted out of some old school Aaliyah, Brandy, Monica and Usher.

They spent the rest of the night talking about everything and anything. He was learning to navigate through his feelings and he would be okay as long as he kept his poker face on.



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It’s not edited. But you guys deserve an update plus I want to finish this book and maybe start on the next one while I still have time. Next semester I will be studying and I won’t have as much time.

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